Does Sherwin Williams Take Old Paint | 5 Recycling Tips

Sherwin-Williams is one of the notable environment-friendly USA paint brands. From production to distribution, the brand makes sure to follow all the necessary regulations to reduce waste as much as possible. But does Sherwin-Williams take old paint back?

Yes, Sherwin-Williams will take old paint back, provided that they satisfy the Paint Care program requirements. You cannot give back aerosol products or specialty coatings. Again, Sherwin-Williams won’t take back containers over 5 gallons.

Although there are multiple restrictions, the program also has multiple benefits. Let’s go over all that in today’s article. Additionally, we’ll provide a few useful recycling tips at the very end to avoid store rejection!

How To Give Old Paint To Sherwin-Williams?

There are around 270 drop-off sites alone in the state of New York, thanks to the PaintCare program of Sherwin-Williams. To give old paint to Sherwin-Williams, look up the –

Drop-Off Locations

PaintCare is active in 11 states thus far. Namely – California, Colorado, Connecticut, Columbia, Maine, Minnesota, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington. There are hundreds of paint drop-off locations in these states, and they offer year-round services to everyone.

If you live in one of these states, you can simply search for the nearest drop-off location using your zip code and city. Furthermore, you can contact the state-specific program coordinator to know more about the drop-off regulations.

Sherwin-Williams Stores

Sherwin-Williams Stores

Most of the Sherwin-Williams stores will also take back paint, provided that there aren’t any substantial defects. It’s a good idea to keep the receipts, as they’ll help you out later.

However, if the paint is too old, the associates will likely show you the doors to the PaintCare program instead. Again, some stores may refuse to accept the paint due to a shortage of proper storage facilities for disposal.

Lowe’s Outlets

Lowe’s is the primary retailer of Sherwin-Williams paint. (See – Does Home Depot Sell Sherwin-Williams Paint? )

As such, you can also drop off old paint at your nearest Lowe’s, provided that they accept it. Sometimes, these outlets double as the PaintCare drop-off locations. You’ll need to talk to the local associates about whether they’re okay with receiving old paint before hauling your stash there.

Sherwin-Williams: Recycling Conditions

Have you ever wondered How To Get Paint Off A Car Window?

If you have, then you know that everything works in a certain manner. Just like you can’t simply take a washcloth to get paint off a car window, you can’t dump all of the leftover paint.

Here are a few of the critical conditions that you’ll need to maintain in order for Sherwin-Williams to take old paint –

  • Pay the recycling fee while purchasing Sherwin-Williams paint to sign up for the PaintCare program.
  • Don’t mix Sherwin-Williams paint with other paint.
  • Don’t show up with damaged containers.
  • Don’t show up with more than 5 gallons of paint at a time.
  • Keep the paint in its original container.
  • Make sure the printed label is still on the container.
  • Make sure the paint hasn’t been contaminated in any way.
  • Don’t drop off the paint without notifying the front desk.
  • Don’t try to recycle spray cans or similar aerosol products.
  • Check for leaks in the container before giving them back.

For a better overview, check out the list of accepted products.

5 Paint Recycling Tips To Avoid Store Rejection

Paint Recycling

The best way to prevent an unwanted outcome is to remain vigilant right from the start. Here is a brief rundown of 5 prominent paint recycling tips to avoid store rejection –

1. Don’t Keep The Paint Unattended

Don’t leave the paint cans unattended in the middle of a renovation project. Cover the containers with lids at all times.

Doing so will help you to avoid possible contamination. If needed, you can take the necessary amount of paint from the container and use them however you like.

That way, you won’t have to worry about the rest of the uncontaminated paint in the sealed container. Again, don’t leave the paint out in the open or expose the cans to sunlight.

2. Don’t Buy In Bulk

Never buy paint cans without calculating the amount first. While Sherwin-Williams paint is known for longevity and consistency, you still shouldn’t buy more than you need.

To prevent buying in bulk, figure out the coverage area with the help of the renovator or the contractor. After finishing up with the project, seal the cans and store them in a dark room.

3. Keep The Container Sealed At All Times

Exposing the paint to sunlight, humid air, etc., will break down the paint and reduce its longevity. The consistency of the paint will no longer be silky smooth. Instead, you’ll find that it’s either cracked or thickened even more.

Again, if any biological contaminants get inside the containers, the paint will develop an unpleasant smell. If you detect a pungent smell, drop it off at the PaintCare locations.

4. Don’t Take Off The Original Printed Labels

It’s important to preserve the original printed labels on the containers. Because the associates at the PaintCare drop-off locations won’t accept the containers without the official seal.

Hence, whatever you do, don’t tamper with the printed labels. Without them, you have no grounds for free disposal.

5. Regularly Check For Discrepancies

Sherwin-Williams paint can easily last for 8-10 years, even longer, depending on the texture quality. But that doesn’t mean you should forget about the containers after storing them.

Check the containers for potential defects once in a while. Better yet, if it’s been too long, return the paint before they go bad for a hassle-free recycling procedure.


Q: Does the recyclable paint count as hazardous material?

Yes, up until the completion of the recycling procedure, leftover paint is considered hazardous material. The paint fumes are not environmentally-friendly & possibly carcinogenic to humans. Hence, acrylic, enamel, lacquer, etc. kinds of paints are treated like hazardous substances.

Q: Can you drop off more than 5 gallons of paint in a day?

No, the Sherwin-Williams PaintCare program associates won’t accept over 5 gallons of recyclable paint in a day. However, you can try sending someone else since you can only submit paint once per visit. Or, you can simply go back the next day to drop off another 5 gallons, and so on.

Q: Will Sherwin-Williams take a fee to dispose of the paint?

It’s actually free to give away the leftover paint to the authorized locations under the PaintCare program. However, there is indeed a hidden cost. The next time you buy paint from Sherwin-Williams, you’ll need to pay a recycling fee. The amount can range anywhere from 45 cents to $1.95, depending on the amount of the paint. (Limit’s capped at 5 Gallons.)

Q: Will the PaintCare program accept paint thinners?

No, you can’t use the PaintCare program to recycle paint thinners, paint additives, tints, etc. Alternatively, you won’t have to pay a recycling fee while purchasing these products.

Before You Go

Getting rid of paint is not as easy as it sounds. While Sherwin-Williams does give you an opportunity to recycle some of the unnecessary paint, it might not always work out.

Under these circumstances, you’ll need to know how to properly dispose of the leftover paint. Alongside waste management and disposal, you’ll also need to know more about – How Long Do Paint Fumes Stay In Your System?

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